Friday, 12 June 2015

Friday Morning Ramble

“It was a brave and deeply ethical thing that Lecretia Seales did. In a society that seems at times positively terrified of thinking seriously about anything, she invited us to shake off our more familiar roles as consumers, viewers, texters and takers of endless selfies, to become, if only for a little while, citizens.”
Lecretia's Legacy: A Matter Of Life And Death – Chris Trotter, BOWALLEY ROAD

“Whether he wants to admit it or not, Peter Dunne has set a precedent in granting permission to use an experimental cannabis extract.”
Compassionate approach plants seed for medical cannabis – Chris Fowlie, DAILY BLOG
Dunne approves medicinal cannabis for teen in coma – YOUR NZ

Quick reality check:
14 Years After Decriminalising Drugs, This Chart Shows Why Portugal’s Bold Risk Paid Off – POLICY MIC
14 Years After Decriminalization, Portugal's Drug Fatalities Rank Second Lowest in EU – TRUTH IN MEDIA

“The public decided long ago that an Auckland-style uber-government for our region was not their idea of improving local democracy. So they’ll have little patience for whining that the people got it wrong.”
Instead of the Wellington Super City – STEPHEN FRANKS

“Magnificent but chilling article by Fiona McKenzie about the racist indoctrination of New Zealand's new immigrants.”
Manipulation of New Immigrants – Fiona McKenzie, NZCPR

Darkest days (and darkest beers) in New Zealand history.
The Darkest Day: The Clock is Ticking – Neil Miller, MALTHOUSE BLOG

No, they are not “our” sheep. Now, extend that insight to property, life, money, wealth, income …
They are not “our” sheep – KIWIBLOG

So, what would be your problem if living standards all rose, and inequality rose too? Oh, look …


“As a reminder, China has ‘soft’ capital controls for individuals which cap outflows at $50,000 a year. Needless to say, the army of Chinese buyers has found a way to circumvent say limitations, and as soon as some of China's hot money, of which there is now roughly $25 trillion in Chinese mainland deposits which are leaking ever faster abroad, makes its way to the US or Canada, [or further afield], it is immediately parked in real estate... And since the risk is that the Politburo (which continues to be on an anti-corruption campaign, at least as far as non-Politburo members are concerned) can halt this capital exodus at any moments by demonstratively executing several of the offenders on primetime TV … ”
60 Year Old Vancouver House Sells For 40% Above Asking As Chinese Buyers Go Full Tilt – ZERO HEDGE

“Why not make it a rule that a Labour MP cannot take home more than the average wage of, roughly, $55,000 per year. The balance of their income, $95,000, would go to the party. This would guarantee Labour an annual income, from its current 32-strong caucus, of at least $3,040,000 per year, or, $9,120,000 over the three year parliamentary term.  That’s not a bad war chest – and just think of the effect on Labour’s voters!”
And on MPs who came into this for power and money!
How Labour could, once again, become a workers’ party – Chris Trotter, DAILY BLOG

“Has a Kiwi coffee taken the froth off America’s favourite hot drink?”
Kiwi Flat Whites taking over – KIWIBLOG

This, below, is scary. NZ Initiative proposes solutions...



“Global innovation continued to climb during 2014 but at the slowest pace seen since the global economic recession hit in 2009. The Reuters report didn’t draw any specific conclusions as to why the innovation slowdown had occurred but did draw a correlation between published scientific literature and patenting activities, noting that the former typically precedes the latter by three to five years.”
Pace of global innovation rises at slowest rate since 2009 global recession – IP WATCHDOG

“…the important role patents play in commercialising software innovation and supporting technology markets.”
The Commercial Value of Software Patents in the High-Tech Industry – Adam Mossoff

“In honour of the 225th anniversary of the first U.S. Copyright Act, the Center for the Protection of Intellectual Property is publishing a series of essays by Mark Schultz and Devlin Hartline on how copyright makes possible a creative commercial culture comprising professional artists, promotes innovation, and ultimately contributes to a flourishing republic.”
Introduction: Promoting an Independent and Professional Class of Creators and Creative  Businesses – CENTER FOR THE PROTECTION OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY

3 Ways the Minimum Wage Hurts People

Reason Minimum Wage Infographic

“Mainstream economists tell us that the Federal Reserve protects us from economic waves, indeed from the business cycle itself.” So how’s that been working out for you?
How Could the Fed Protect Us from Economic Waves? – Keith Weiner, CAPITALISM MAGAZINE

“Krugman claims he's been "right about everything", but that's far from the truth.”
Paul Krugman: Three Wrongs Don’t Make a Right – Robert Murphy, THE FREEMAN

Can’t be said too often.
More on Romer's Attack Against "Mathiness" in Economics – Ryan McMaken, MISES DAILY 

Fair questions. Could you list your own top five?
Who and where are today's leading anti-Keynesians? – Steve Kates,LAW OF MARKETS

“According to the economists of the Austrian School, artificial credit expansion is the primary factor behind the business cycle. Critics have tried to poke holes in the theory, but David Howden shows those holes are just an illusion.”
Episode 419 Austrian Business Cycle Theory: Answering the Critics – TOM WOODS

“Over half of Greeks disapprove of government stance in lender talks.”

“Just when we thought political leaders could not get any more grandiose, the G7 leaders have settled on a....wait a minute, an 85-year economic plan to destroy the world economy.”
Greens Bully G7 Leaders into Unwinding the Industrial Revolution – Walter Donway, SAVVY STREET

“Perhaps it would be better to talk instead about economic *progress*, as Mises did.”
Fooled by GDP – Stephen Horwitz, THE FREEMAN

Wow. How Americans spent their retail coin in the last ten years


Problem is, they’re not all on the road.
There Has Never Been More Cars "On The Sidelines" – David Stockman, CONTRA CORNER

How long before we see this again?

Embedded image permalink

Only just now discovering what Bastiat knew 160 years ago.
Bigger cities make brighter ideas – NZ HERALD
Economic Harmonies: Chapter 4, 'Exchange' – FREDERIC BASTIAT

“That’s how most of the media are treating a new study, anyway.”
No Global Warming Pause! (NOAA study captures media, including WSJ) – Calvin Beisner, MASTER RESOURCE

“Affordable energy remains central to the reduction of absolute poverty.”
The Poor Need Affordable Energy – Iain Murray, THE FREEMAN

Concise defence of (serious) climate skepticism challenging the catastrophic package deal combining apocalyptic predictions with massive irreversible programmes of global statist coercion (aka "climate action").
Understanding the Global Warming Debate – Warren Meyer, FORBES

Theist vs Atheist

“To reason is to integrate perceptual evidence into concepts, propositions, and theories. So what is faith?”
What Is Faith? Seven definitions – STEPHEN HICKS

Philosopher Stephen Hicks’s back-and-forth debate with religionist Joe Wright on key issues in religion begins today at EveryJoe.Com. First up:
Is Religion Worth Arguing About?

"The New Testament offers no advice on how to produce earthly wealth and achieve earthly happiness. On the contrary, it instructs followers not to worry about what they eat or wear, but rather to act like 'the flowers of the field' that neither toil nor spin. And it contains no doctrine of individual rights. Rather, it commands followers to 'turn the other cheek' when struck and to obey the state…”
The New Testament Versus the American Revolution – OBJECTIVE STANDARD

As always, The Onion nails it.
Sumerians Look On In Confusion As God Creates World – THE ONION

“An interesting panel discussion (from an Objectivist conference in 2014) on the differences between Objectivist atheism and the New Atheism of Harris, Dawkins, etc.” (Supplement it with George H. Smith’s still insightful Atheism: The Case Against God)

“The two socialist systems are uncannily alike.”  For some reason, there are people even today who find this comparison gets under their skin…

“But the Ukraine crisis – and the broader Russia-West tensions that it has stoked – obscures the fact that Moscow has been quietly but rapidly re-orienting its strategic posture. And it is doing so to the east, not the west. For Putin, the logic of an Asian pivot is threefold…”
Putin's pivot: The Russians are coming to Asia –Matthew Sussex,  THE INTERPRETER

“I’ll be up front with you and say that this video is disturbing.  It’s like a bucket of ice-cold water thrown in the face of the dream world that most people are walking through.”
Video: Cop goes on profanity-laden tirade in affluent U.S. suburb, pulls out his gun on two kids – Simon Black, SOVEREIGN MAN

Warning …


“While mistakes were made by both the Bush administration and the Obama administration, those mistakes were of different kinds and of different magnitudes in their consequences, though both sets of mistakes are worth thinking about, so that so much tragic waste of blood and treasure does not happen again.”
Who Lost Iraq? – Thomas Sowell, CAPITALISM MAGAZINE

“Islamic State rose to power using a jihadist playbook. offering the world a blueprint of their battle plan.”
The Management of Savagery – Steve Kates, LAW OF MARKETS

Mind you, five years before WWII you could have compiled a similar table about the risk of death from Nazis.
What's the REAL Risk from Terrorism? – ZERO HEDGE

They choose to wear it?


Fair question … ?


Because …


A: Because it’s Chardonnay?


“Military units have used camouflage of one kind or another since antiquity. However, with the invention of the airplane and the rise of aerial warfare, camouflage (to hide targets) and decoys (to draw fire away from real targets or to intimidate the enemy) became bigger and bigger. How big? Read on and see.”
Massive Wartime Decoys and Camouflage Operations – GEEK PRESS

Jerry Seinfeld says it’s pointless now being a comedian on American campuses, because American college kids are too politically correct. Pretentious college kid responds.
Jerry Seinfeld Asks If Humor Is Too Politically Incorrect to Survive – Michael Hurd, HURD.COM
An Open Letter to Jerry Seinfeld from a 'Politically Correct' College Student – HUFFINGTON POST

Great resource for every parent: “An online Montessori resource tool for teachers and parents, with vidoes and articles that illustrate Montessori classrooms and best practices.” And the new Assistants to Infancy (0-3) section is now live!

Christopher Lee died overnight, aged 93. Time to re-watch Wicker Man.
Christopher Lee: he could turn schlock into Shakespeare – TELEGRAPH
Sir Christopher Lee's best on-screen moments – TELEGRAPH

“Recorded a heavy metal concept album about Charlemagne." Could Chuck Norris top that?


This gentle wee song just keeps getting better and better. So here’s the demo (“Better than the album version, and infinitely more heartbreaking.”)

And you can see Hammond next week at Big Beat Coffee + Kitchen’s ‘Love A Legend’ Series. (Hammond is playing  Fri, 26 June. Buy tickets from Big Beat Coffee + Kitchen, 700 Dominion Road, Balmoral, tel 09-630-8556. See. Old school.)  Because "I know, there's so much love left lying around ... "

You know that feeling of an impossible love. Like being in a hothouse (Im Treibhaus) … ?

Phew! The late great David McComb and a bunch of folk who became Bad Seeds and more …

And finally, a message from Ayn Rand:

Enjoy your reading,
and have a great weekend!

[Hat tips Small Dead Animals, Home Paddock, Geek Press, James Stevens Valliant, David Prichard, Australian Centre for Montessori Studies, Taliesin Fellows, Adam Mossoff, John Ansell, George H. Smith, Scary Bible Quote of the Day, Keith Weiner, Alex Epstein, Boaz Arad-Erder, Vinay Kolhatkar, TransformDrugPolicy, Daisy Christodoulou, Stalingrad & Poorski, Name_cannot_be_blank, Real Time Economics, Rudolf E. Havenstein , Holden, Max Roser, Copyright Alliance, David Burge, Greg Cole]


  1. Have seen that Portugal drug story everywhere. Some US states are making a land grab for the drug trade and this story is part of the propaganda.

    "Portugal’s national drug coordinator Dr. Joao Goulao, whom Christopher Ingraham credited as the “the architect of the country’s decriminalization policy,” cautioned that “it’s very difficult to identify a causal link between decriminalization by itself and the positive tendencies we have seen.”

    No shit.

    The Fiona Mackenzie link is bog standard Statist mo. The State divides the population into racial groups to help foster division within society. Some take the bait will turn on other members of other groups. From a State pov a divided society is easer to control and requires additional State planning.

  2. @Simon: Maybe you should quote that whole paragraph: "That said, these new numbers challenge the claims of decriminalisation’s opponents, who said that Portugal would fall victim to rising drug use rates as a result of the policy." And it didn't.


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